Bloomington City Council | WGLT

Bloomington City Council

Bloomington’s strong budget reserves helped it weather COVID-19 this spring, but the pandemic’s unpredictability means the city’s finances aren’t yet in the clear, leaders heard during Monday night’s city council meeting.

Lake Bloomington shoreline
WGLT file photo

The City of Bloomington plans to explore additional water supplies to meet an anticipated rise in demand over the next two decades. That's included in the city's proposed 20-year water master plan.

Better Bus Stop campaign progress
Connect Transit / Facebook

In a meeting with the Bloomington City Council Monday night, Connect Transit board chair Ryan Whitehouse pledged the public transportation service will become completely ADA compliant by 2024.

Council members in Bloomington
Mark Pickering/WGLT

UPDATED 11:50 a.m. | The Bloomington City Council voted Monday night to approve the reappointment of a Connect Transit board member, though not without discussion, with alderman Jeff Crabill moving to exclude the selection of Ryan Whitehouse.

Bloomington police car
Amy Niebur / WGLT

Bloomington City Manager Tim Gleason said it’s "ridiculous” to suggest local governments will ever fully defund police, but he supports the discussion of how to better redirect some police resources.

McLean County Government Center
WGLT file photo

The City of Bloomington plans to move more city offices and its city council meetings to the McLean County Government Center by the end of the year.

Patrick Lawler standing downtown
Patrick Lawler

UPDATED 2:05 P.M. | A social studies teacher at Normal Community High School plans to run for Bloomington City Council.

Kelby Cumpston
Kelby Cumpston / Twitter

One candidate has already emerged in the race to succeed Scott Black on the Bloomington City Council.

Scott Black speaking at city ouncil
Staff / WGLT

Scott Black has announced he won’t be seeking a third term on the Bloomington City Council next year.

Bloomington city council members Mboka Mwilambwe, Julie Emig, Jeff Crabill and Joni Painter
City of Bloomington

Bloomington City Council members generally say they aren't ready to overhaul public safety in the city amid national calls to "Defund the Police," but several want to start heading in that direction.

Hamilton Road project
City of Bloomington

Bloomington will get financial help from the federal government to acquire property for connecting the two sections of Hamilton Road.

On Wednesday night, the city council approved a resolution authorizing the use of $500,000 of state motor fuel tax dollars to buy the land needed to build the new four-lane section between Bunn Street and Commerce Parkway with $400,000 to be reimbursed with Federal Surface Transportation funds.

The Bloomington City Council meeting that was scheduled to take place virtually Monday night was rescheduled to 7:30 p.m. Wednesday.

Holding the BLM banner
Facebook / Black Lives Matter BloNo

A Bloomington City Council member is criticizing Black Lives Matter BloNo for what she considers a heavy-handed approach following the group's recent list of demands to reform policing, education, social services and more. 

Man at sewer
Staff / WGLT

Bloomington city officials hope a state grant will allow the city to start sooner on the next phase of a major infrastructure project.

Two people walking in downtown Bloomington
WGLT file photo

Bloomington City Council members expressed a desire Monday to revive a three-year-old downtown revitalization plan now that a major component is off the table.

Bloomington Mayor Tari Renner and City Councilmember Jenn Carillo.
Breanna Grow / WGLT

Bloomington Mayor Tari Renner stressed public safety remains the city’s top priority while pledging to improve law enforcement practices. City Council member Jenn Carrillo advocated for a complete overhaul of police departments.

Downtown Bloomington
Carleigh Gray / WGLT

Bloomington restaurants and bars will have an opportunity to add or expand outdoor seating in the near future.

Downtown Blm
Ashley Binkowski

The Bloomington City Council votes Tuesday on a plan to allow the city manager to temporarily close streets, city parking lots and alleys to allow for businesses to expand their outdoor footprint during the pandemic.

Grossinger Motors Arena at night
Carleigh Gray / WGLT

UPDATED 12:10 p.m. | Bloomington officials said Friday they plan to terminate the city's agreement with VenuWorks, the Iowa-based firm that has been running the city-owned Grossinger Motors Arena since 2016.


Parking enforcement in downtown Bloomington could see some changes later this year.

A proposal by City Council member Jamie Mathy would extend enforcement hours into the evening with current employees working staggered shifts to cover the extra time. The plan was one of three initiatives proposed by Mathy during Monday night’s virtual Committee of the Whole meeting.


Some Bloomington restaurants and bars are getting the chance to have the cost of their liquor licenses reduced.

Sign to Ferrero plant
Eric Stock / WGLT

Economic developers are providing a sweetener in hopes of prompting one of the country’s largest candy companies to expand in Bloomington.


The Bloomington City Council heard presentations Monday night from several social service agencies addressing the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, as well as numerous citizens upset over last week’s vote against a possible direct aid program.

GE Road milling
City of Bloomington

Bloomington plans to spend more than $4 million on street resurfacing this summer, just part of its effort to repair some of the city's crumbling infrastructure.

Council members in grid

With a unanimous vote, no public comment and little discussion beyond praise for city staff, the Bloomington City Council passed the city’s fiscal year 2021 budget Wednesday night.

Bloomington City Hall
Eric Stock / WGLT

“The city is in a good position, but it’s not in a great position,” City Manager Tim Gleason said Monday night in terms of the city withstanding the economic impact of COVID-19.

Charlie Schlenker / WGLT

Bloomington City Council members signaled by a 5-4 vote Monday night they are not in favor of approving direct payments to people disadvantaged by the pandemic shutdown.

Bloomington VFW
Eric Stock / WGLT

Club organizations like the VFW can now offer delivery and curbside pickup of alcohol in Bloomington.

The City Council granted the permission during its virtual meeting Monday night, voting to modify the local emergency order approved on March 26. The amendment extends the temporary curbside and delivery alcohol allowance for restaurants and bars to club liquor license holders during the state’s shelter-in-place directive.

Advocate BroMenn Medical Center in Normal
Staff / WGLT

City councils in Bloomington and Normal will be considering emergency ordinances on Monday to help them more swiftly respond to COVID-19.

Tim Gleason
Amy Niebur / WGLT

Bloomington City Manager Tim Gleason said he plans to close offices at city hall and the McLean County Government Center to the public from Wednesday through May 1 as part of an executive order he plans to issue Tuesday in response to the coronavirus.